Monday, May 9, 2011

Arizona -- The Mobile Phone Photo Tour

When Dad had a heart attack just over a month ago, I flew to Arizona. 

I didn't know if I'd be able to put it all into words; that was a task just too daunting to consider. Instead, I snapped photo after photo on both my mobile phone and my "real" camera. 

Let's get started on your own personal tour of the trip from departure to return, shall we?

I noticed this as Kitty Daddy dropped me off at the airport, laying in the passenger pick-up/drop-off lane here in Fargo. It was the first time since getting the call that I remember having a total "real life" moment where my mind wasn't going over and over and over the condition of my Dad. It also made me look at KD and say, "Did I pack my toothbrush?"

Little sister, H, and her saint of a man, D, flew in to 'Vegas from North Carolina about a half-hour before I got there from North Dakota. The first thing we noticed? It was warm enough for us to wear sandals! (Sorry if you're one of those anti-foot folks. Not having to wear socks and boots is a big deal when you live in the freaking tundra. You learn to embrace nearly-nude feet!) (Guess who has translucent skin and two thumbs? That's right! THIS GUY!)

This was the room Dad was in at the CVICU. In deference to his privacy, I won't be sharing details of his condition when we arrived. I will, however, tell you that it was one of the most terrifying days of my life. I think he got me back for any of those times he had to rush to MY side at a hospital. (That is my reflection on the right; little sister H's man, D, sits next to me. This was his first time to meet the family. That man made the best of a shit situation, and I will always be grateful to him.)

On the first morning, I went in with coffee for my sister, and immediately abandoned that idea to go find a camera. How could you see THIS and not think, "this needs to be on the internet"? There's also a photo somewhere of D's arm around the dog, because he woke up and found a warm body next to him, only to discover that warm body was quite furry. Turns out H. had gone to the shower and Jake, Dad's big ol' Heinz 57 dog fancied a snuggle. I'm telling you, D put up with a lot on this trip. 

H & D (and sometimes Jake the dog) got to snuggle, but I was on my own. That is, until Dennis came home. Dennis is Dad's roaming kitty, and he showed up every so often just long enough to say hi, catch 38 winks and run off. He has that little boy kitty body and high, squeaky voice I'm a total sucker for. We bonded. 

I made breakfast. This is a baked French toast dish to which I added blueberries after consulting with my foodie buddy Chris back in Fargo. (HI, CHRIS!) We decided that berries would hold up to the heat and brown sugar. Holy cow, was I ever glad we thought it would work because it. Was. AWESOME. (I should tell you Chris is a blueberry whore fan the likes of which you have never seen. It would not surprise me at all to learn he's got a blueberry burger in development. He's like that.)

Two days in, Kitty Daddy and I decided to bring the BoyRD out. I needed one of my boys with me, and it made the most sense to send out the RD. Even under the circumstances, it was some of the best time I've ever spent with my son. To pick up the RD at the airport in 'Vegas, we had to cross the Colorado River, formerly over Hoover Dam. But guess what? The bridge is done! Here is the one shot I got of it. (It rained later in the trip, ruining more chances for photography that trip.) I have no idea who those people are. I say we refer to them as Larry, Mo and Curly. Hey, Curly? Nice wedgie, dude. 

Somewhere during the week, I realized the RD is an adult! Needless to say, that meant he bought a lottery ticket and scratched his way to ... nothin'. I'm assuming he learned his gambling-related lesson. 

Being in Kingman, AZ, I figured I was in for culinary blech for a full week. Much to my delight, my childhood friend, Theresa, brought us to a sweet little coffee shop downtown that had carrot/ginger soup! Talk about feeling like I was back in civilization. (HI, THERESA!)

One day, the RD and I drove up to the Hualapai Mountains. It was a lovely afternoon, but we'll save the pictures from that trip for another day. 

Shucks, we missed it!

I was able to take my son places I used to hang out as a teenager. Many an evening hour was spent solving the world's problems on this beach as a teenager. I went on to work at this hotel/casino in Laughlin when the RD was a small boy, and the poignancy of being there with him wasn't lost.  

THIS is where Kitty Daddy and I met. No, really -- that exact spot. 

And when we all lived together, this is the apartment complex pool we used to go swimming in. Boy RD was about four years old and he would beg Kitty Daddy to "go slimmin'?" 

I did have one afternoon to myself out there. Needless to say, I took my butt straight to a Sonic. Ahhh, cherry limeade. I love you like no other. 

As the RD and I were driving back to 'Vegas to head for Fargo, I took this cloud break to mean the storm was over.

Thus concludes the mobile phone photo tour. I'll show you what we came home to in the coming days. 

Wherever you are, be glad of it. 
Whomever you're with, make the most of it. 
Time is short, life is fleeting. 
Live it. 

Glad to be here with you, 
Mama Laura

1 comment:

Ky said...

Isn't it funny that we lived in culinary hell for so long and had NO idea?

Our poor palates are lucky we didn't scar them forever.

I love you to the moon and back.